DETECTION OF DIFFERENTIAL ITEM FUNCTIONING IN MATHEMATICS MULTIPLE CHOICE EXAMINATION ADMINISTERED BY THE NATIONAL EXAMINATION COUNCIL (NECO) IN ABUJA
This study sought to detect Differential Item Functioning in National Examination Council (NECO) Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) in the 2008 June/July multiple choice mathematics examination papers 1. The research was carried out on one thousand seven-hundred and twenty (1720) examinees. A random sample of 14 out of 43 schools were used. 9 Urban schools with 1119 examinees and 5 Rural schools with 849 examinees, also 849 boys and 871 girls comprised the sample. The Mantel-Heanszel procedure, Scheuneman chi-square test and the Transform Item Difficulty methods were used for the analyses. Mantel-Heanszel procedure did not significantly function differentially in terms of gender, but it however exhibited 14 items as functioning differentially with respect to location. Scheuneman modified chi-square test flagged up 46 items as functioning differentially in terms of gender and 41 items differentially function with respect to location. Transform Item Difficulty methods detected 2 items as differentiating between gender and 11 items significantly differentiating with respect to location. The three methods exhibit significant different with respect to location, converging at 7 items, that is item numbers 15, 22, 24, 25, 45,53, and 57. From the result of the analyses there is slight gender differential tending towards the girls while location significantly function and tended towards urban schools. Thus National Examination Council (NECO) Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) should always be analysed to check for location differential item functioning for possible elimination.